Check out our latest service -UX/UI Audits!
Product Studio
Digital Partner
Digital Solution

Strategic Timing: When to Engage a Digital Product Design and Development Agency?

James Sullivan
James Sullivan
October 11, 2023
When should you get a digital product design and development agency during new product development?


In the fast-paced world of digital products, timing is everything. Many Product Managers, Startup Founders, and CTOs grapple with numerous responsibilities from idea generation to go-to-market strategies. Getting expert help in design and development may seem like an extra step. However, involving a specialized agency at an early stage can be a game-changer.

In this article, we will guide you through the benefits and considerations, helping you decide when to seek a digital partner agency.

Benefits of Involving an Agency at an Early Stage

In this section, we'll delve into the numerous advantages of involving a digital product agency at the start of your project, beginning with the importance of expert advice.

Expert Advice from Day One

One of the most significant advantages of having a software development partner is the immediate access to expertise. Agencies specialize in various aspects of digital development, ensuring your idea is vetted for feasibility, scalability, and market fit right from the start. The earlier you engage, the less time and resources you'll waste on potential missteps.


Contrary to popular belief, involving an app development partner early on can save you money in the long run. These agencies are well-versed in project planning, which means fewer changes and overhauls later. This streamlined digital product development process prevents budget overruns and ensures a quicker time to market.

A Collaborative Approach

How do you choose a software development company? Look for one that values collaboration. An early partnership encourages a sense of ownership and alignment with your project's goals. The digital product development agency becomes an extension of your product team rather than just a service provider, leading to a product that truly resonates with your vision.

Risk Mitigation

In any new venture, risks are inevitable. A digital partner agency can help identify these risks upfront, providing solutions or alternatives before they become significant issues. Early involvement allows for proactive planning, whether it's market competition or technical constraints.

Access to a Wider Skill Set

Digital agencies usually have a wide range of expertise, from UI/UX design to backend development. Partnering early gives you access to this versatile skill set, ensuring your product is well-rounded and meets user expectations.

Outsourcing to a Design & Development Studio: The Process

When the time comes to partner with a digital studio, knowing the steps involved can help demystify the process. Understanding these stages can also help Product Managers, Startup Founders, and CTOs set the right expectations and contribute more effectively to the project.

Initial Consultation and Needs Assessment

An initial consultation is the first step when you decide to work with a software development partner. This is where you present your product idea, and the digital product agency assesses its feasibility and potential for success. This early engagement ensures both parties are on the same page and sets the groundwork for a successful partnership.

Proposal and Contract

After the initial consultation, the digital partner agency will present a proposal outlining the scope of work, timelines, and cost estimates. This is the phase where contracts are signed, and commitments are made. Reviewing the proposal carefully is crucial to ensure it aligns with your project's needs and budget.

Design and Development

At this stage, the mobile app development partner starts to bring your idea to life. This is where user interface (UI) design, user experience (UX) strategies, and backend development happen. You will be involved in iterations and approvals, ensuring the final product is as you envisioned.

Testing and Quality Assurance

Quality is non-negotiable when it comes to software products. Your software development partner will perform multiple user testing rounds to ensure the final product is bug-free and operates smoothly on all platforms.

Deployment and Post-Launch Support

The final product is deployed once testing is complete and both parties are satisfied. But the partnership doesn't have to end there. Many agencies offer post-launch support for maintenance and updates, ensuring your product remains competitive.

Why Should You Hire a Design Studio

For Product Managers, Startup Founders, and CTOs, deciding to bring on a digital partner agency is pivotal. While some may think it's just an unnecessary expense, partnering with a design studio can offer tangible benefits and added value to your project.

Creative Expertise

Design studios come with a wealth of creative knowledge and experience. When you partner with a digital studio, you hire a team of skilled product designers who can create aesthetically pleasing and user-friendly interfaces, elevating your product's market appeal.

End-to-End Solutions

A design studio can provide comprehensive services covering every product development aspect, from ideation to market launch. This means you don't have to manage multiple vendors; your software development partner will handle everything, simplifying project management and reducing stress.

Technological Advancements

Technology changes rapidly. Staying abreast of these changes is a full-time job. A design studio keeps up-to-date with the latest technological trends and tools, ensuring your product is built with the most current and robust solutions available.

Time and Resource Efficiency

Time is of the essence in the competitive digital world. Hiring a design studio early in the product development process can expedite timelines, ensuring your product reaches the market more quickly. Moreover, this approach frees up internal resources, allowing your development team to focus on core competencies and strategic activities.

Flexibility and Scalability

The journey from product conception to market is rarely a straight path. With a design studio as your app development partner, you can pivot or scale your project as needed without the hassle of renegotiating contracts or changing service providers.

Don't Forget to Verify Skills

Before you fully commit to a digital partner agency for your project, performing due diligence is essential. After all, your software development partner will play a crucial role in shaping your product features.

Here's an overview of what you should verify to ensure that you make a well-informed decision.

Technical Proficiency

The first thing you want to ascertain is the technical proficiency of the design studio. Have they successfully executed projects similar to yours? What technologies do they specialize in? Answering these questions will give you insight into whether they can meet your project's specific needs.

Portfolio and Case Studies

Nothing speaks louder than a strong portfolio and compelling case studies. This will give you a hands-on look at what the design studio has achieved for other clients. It can also offer ideas and inspiration for your own product.

Client Testimonials and Reviews

While the design studio will naturally highlight their successes, hearing what past clients say is equally essential. Client testimonials and reviews can offer an unfiltered look into the agency's reliability, professionalism, and skill level.

Communication and Collaboration Skills

Clear communication is vital in any partnership. Assess how effectively the digital product agency communicates at each stage of the consultation process. Do they listen to your needs? Are they open to feedback? Effective collaboration is a must for project success.

Financial Stability and Business Acumen

Your app development partner should be proficient in design and development and have sound business practices. A financially stable digital product agency is more likely to deliver your project on time and within budget.

Look for a Specialized Design Studio

Partnering with a digital studio specializing in your industry or the specific type of product you're developing can bring invaluable advantages. A specialized agency will better understand market trends, consumer behaviors, and technical requirements specific to your field. Below are some key points when looking for a specialized design studio.

Industry Expertise

The design studio's expertise in your industry is one of the most critical factors. Whether you're in healthcare, finance, or e-commerce, an agency with industry-specific experience will have valuable insights that can benefit your product development.

Tailored Services

A specialized software development partner can offer customized solutions for your project's unique needs. This targeted approach ensures your product meets and exceeds industry standards and expectations.

Advanced Technical Skills

Specialized agencies usually have advanced technical skills in specific areas. If you're looking for cutting-edge technology or innovative solutions, these agencies are more likely to deliver exactly what you need.

Competitive Edge

You gain a competitive edge by opting for a specialized app development partner. They can help identify opportunities and weaknesses that a generalist agency might overlook, giving you an advantage in a saturated market.

Tips to Choose the Right One

After understanding the importance of involving a design studio early on and the added benefits of specialization, the next step is choosing the right software development partner.

Here are some essential tips to guide your decision-making process.

Define Your Objectives Clearly

Before looking for an app development partner, ensure your objectives are well-defined. Knowing your business goals will help narrow your options and make the selection process more manageable.

Do Your Research

Don't rely solely on internet searches or recommendations. Make it a point to investigate multiple agencies. Check their portfolios, read client testimonials, and talk to previous clients to better understand the agency's capabilities.

Budget Considerations

Be upfront about your budget constraints when talking to potential agencies. This will help you quickly identify which digital partner agency fits your financial framework and avoid wasting time on those outside your range.

Evaluate Communication Skills

As mentioned earlier, effective communication is crucial for successful project execution. Pay attention to how responsive and clear the agency is during initial discussions. This often serves as a good indicator of future interactions.

Ask the Right Questions

Prepare a list of questions to ask potential agencies. Questions could range from their experience with similar projects to the technologies they use and even how they handle project setbacks.


Navigating the path of new product development can be a complex endeavor, but partnering with a digital studio early on can significantly streamline the product development process. By doing so, you benefit from expert advice, specialized services, and an enhanced ability to make well-informed decisions.

This article has guided you through the advantages of involving a design studio at an early stage, the process of outsourcing, the criteria to verify skills, and essential tips for choosing the right software development partner.

As you progress in your journey, consider engaging with One Seven, a reputable digital product studio specializing in helping companies like yours. From product concept to completion, we offer a comprehensive range of services that can be viewed in detail on our Service Page.

Ready to take your product to the next level? Don't hesitate to contact OneSeven, your go-to software development agency for tailored digital solutions.

Ready to Build Industry Changing Software?

Click the button below, tell us more about your project and book a discovery call with out CEO.

Related Posts